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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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Pardew named LMA Manager of the Year

Alan Pardew has been named League Managers Association (LMA) Manager of the Year after guiding Newcastle to fifth place in the Premier League this season.

• Papiss Cisse to stay at Newcastle

Pardew picked up the Premier League Manager of the Year award last week, capping a remarkable season which saw Newcastle finish above the likes of Chelsea, Everton and Liverpool. The LMA award is voted for by members, including all managers from the top four professional leagues in English football.

In an outstanding season, Pardew guided his side to 19 wins in their 38 league games, and they also recorded 15 clean sheets. Pardew has been highly commended on his recruitment of players including Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba and Yohan Cabaye.

"There is no doubt that the LMA Annual Awards are perceived as the most accurate measure of a manager's ability because there are no better judges of your performance than your peers," said LMA Chairman Howard Wilkinson. "Alan Pardew's achievements at Newcastle this season are there for all to see and it is just reward that he should be named as LMA Manager of the Year.

"I'm often asked, where are all the English coaches? My answer is 'We have plenty of them, they just need an opportunity.' I am delighted for Alan that he has taken his opportunity."

Richard Bevan, Chief Executive of the LMA, said: "Tonight is a celebration of this season's managerial achievements across the top four leagues in the professional game. To receive votes from and to be acknowledged by your fellow managers and competitors is a great honour.

"Alan is fully deserving of this recognition and what he has achieved in such a short space of time with Newcastle is very impressive. I would also like to say a special thank you to all the members who have contributed to yet another fantastic season."

Meanwhile, Pardew's focus remains squarely on retaining the squad which performed so well this term. The Newcastle boss, though, admits it may be difficult to stave off Europe's biggest clubs when the summer transfer window opens.

"I think it is important to try and keep our best players," said Pardew. "I think that is going to be difficult but we will try. When you look at the finance we have it is difficult when Champions League clubs come calling. We will have to take stock of that.

"We have got our eyes set on players we think can take us forward if we lose anybody. In terms of bringing people in, we will definitely bring in two or three players and hopefully get it right. We need to strengthen in some areas."

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